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Waidner-Spahr Library

Open Educational Resources (OER): Adopt

Open Educational Resources (OER) are educational material that are freely available to use, share, adapt, and reuse.

Want to Adopt OER?

Are you considering incorporating open resources into your course to save students money and improve teaching and learning? First on this page, you will find tips for finding Open Educational Resources for your classes. Once you've found the right resource, you may want to make modifications to suit your particular class! Look below for a helpful guide for modifying Open Textbooks and OER, including examples from several common formats. 

OER Adoption Steps

1. Look to see if someone else has created an OER textbook or complete course that is similar to what you are using currently. Look at the textbook collections listed in this guide under the Find tab

2. Consider your learning objectives. Focus on what you would like your students to know or accomplish rather than finding a textbook that perfectly matches your current one. You will likely need to find and combine a variety of open materials in order to cover all of the aspects of your course. 

3. Use Google Advanced Search to find open resources. 

4. Search in some of the OER repositories listed in this guide under the Find tab.

5. Use library collections. Taking advantage of library collections is another way to provide course materials at a low-cost to students. 

For example, the library has access to thousands of academic eBooks, many of which allow access by an unlimited number of simultaneous users. Do you want to use a library eBooks for a class? Contact your liaison librarian to find out if it is a multi-user copy (or to see if one is available).

eBook collections include:

6. If you still haven't been able to find what you're looking for, ask your liaison librarian. We're happy to help! 

7. Consider creating and sharing your own OER. Take a look at the Create tab on this guide for more information. 

Modifying Open Textbooks

This guide provides five detailed steps for identifying and selecting an Open Textbook that can be modified for your class. The steps include the following: 

  1. Check license
  2. Identify format
  3. Assess editability
  4. Determine access
  5. Publish textbook

The guide also includes information about working with five common types/formats of OER:

  • PDF
  • HTML
  • MOBI and EPUB
  • Pressbooks
  • OpenStax